Healthcare New Hire Best Practices to Cut Onboarding Time and Reduce Staff Turnover

Amber Ratcliffe
Physician and another man shaking hands

New hire onboarding in healthcare is constant in today’s staffing environment. Onboarding new employees can be long and tedious with boxes to check, policies to acknowledge, and training to complete. And there’s added pressure because a slow start for healthcare new hires can lead to costly delays and an overall decrease in productivity.

According to the 2022 NSI National Healthcare Retention & RN Staffing Report, the average facility turnover rate among employees in 2021 was 25.9%. That means HR teams ended up replacing an average of one in four workers!

Historically, most organizations view onboarding as a necessary burden to get healthcare new hires up to speed so they can perform their job. And who can blame them? Things are B-U-S-Y!

But, putting a bit more thought into new hire onboarding can turn the tables — so you aren’t constantly hiring. Organizations that put extra effort into a great onboarding experience have significantly higher employee retention. Plus, when a good onboarding process includes medical credentialing, then you’re also getting providers paid faster, which will make them happier in your facility.


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Benefits of Better New Hire Onboarding in Healthcare

Statistics show that companies with solid employee connections experience several benefits, including:

Increased Staff Retention

Giving new hires a great onboarding experience is how you get an above-and-beyond commitment from them. Show them what makes your organization special — engaged employees who feel a meaningful connection to the organization and a commitment to improvement will be less tempted to leave.

Revenue Growth

Your organization — and the provider — are losing money every week with credentialing and payer enrollment delays. Streamlining these processes will get providers in front of patients sooner — which boosts the bottom line and retention.

Increased Employee Satisfaction

Attracting great talent is much easier when you’re recognized as an employer of choice. Sure, competitive compensation and a great work environment play a big role, but giving employees a great experience in the beginning will set you on the right path.

Improved Staff Productivity

Well-planned onboarding includes quality training to help employees ramp their performance faster, so they can contribute more, sooner. When you share advancement opportunities at this time, you’re helping the new hire see themselves at your organization for the long term.

5 Ideas to Set Healthcare New Hires Up for Success

Making just a few tweaks to your new hire onboarding in healthcare, you can reap the benefits. Here are a few ideas to improve your process:

1. Share the larger purpose of your organization

According to research by Brandon Hall Group, 88% of organizations say it is critical that “employees believe in what the organization stands for” as part of the onboarding process. To bring this to life, include training materials that share your organization’s mission, vision, and values. It could be a pre-recorded video from the CEO, a story about how the organization helps patients, or a group chat with a leader to explain what makes the organization special.

2. Talk about the value of an employee’s specific role

Sometimes it’s hard to see how a lower-level role is impacting the organization’s mission. To make this connection during onboarding, share quotes or short videos profiling staff members who put their own personality or spin on their work, and who understand how their role contributes to the overall mission.

3. Foster connection with coworkers

Increase new hire engagement by scheduling time during meetings for ice-breakers or games that help employees get to know each other better. Encourage leaders to take individual staff members to lunch or coffee as part of onboarding. This shows employees they are valued, and also gives leaders an opportunity to hear from staff.

4. Begin onboarding as soon as the offer is accepted

Healthcare is one of the most highly regulated industries, so you need to start the onboarding process immediately to ensure you’re not paying the new hire to sit in the breakroom their first week. Healthcare-specific training is required for every employee and if you use an online learning management system, you can give them access before their first day. Some healthcare organizations even offer virtual new hire orientation so the employees can complete their training and policy acknowledgments from home before coming to the facility.

5. Increase visibility into the process

Checking in with new hires helps you to smooth out the process. You may find that many people are getting stuck at the same point; or performance is poor in a certain course and you need to make updates. While you can reach out to the new hire and ask for feedback at any point, it is much easier to check progress and performance using an online platform.

Use Technology to Improve New Hire Onboarding

Onboarding new employees in a medical facility is no small feat. On average, it can take up to eight weeks to ensure that all the necessary credentialing and training are in place for a healthcare new hire — a process that can be extended when you add the ideas above. But the time is well worth it. To make the process as easy and efficient as possible, be sure you’re taking advantage of technology and automation.

Ability to Bundle Tasks

With a learning management system (LMS), you can group online courses into a curriculum for new employees — with training based on their role. Then it is just a couple clicks to assign all needed courses, instead of multiple processes. A unified compliance platform makes it possible to assign training AND send documents and policies for attestation at the same time.

Automatic Reminders and Reporting

Manually sending reminder emails is probably one of the most time consuming parts of onboarding. An online compliance platform will automatically send reminders based on the course or attestation due date. Plus, you can schedule reports to automatically send to your inbox to stay on top of completion.

Digitize Credentialing

The credentialing process is tedious for everyone. Use a digital credentialing system that enables you to email providers a link to a secure online platform where they can upload their documents. The system will continue reminding the provider until all documents are uploaded. A standardized workflow will ensure no credentialing tasks fall through the cracks.

Accessible Anywhere

Don’t let paper forms and files hold back your new hire onboarding in healthcare. Let new hires fill out paperwork and complete training online instead of waiting until their first day of work. It’s easier for you as well — no more filing!

Ready to take your onboarding to the next level? See how MedTrainer can help.